Discovery and implications of transcellular mitophagy

Chung Ha O Davis, Nicholas Marsh-Armstrong

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

15 Scopus citations


T he mitochondrial quality control system regulating mitochondria biogenesis, dynamics, and degradation has been extensively studied because of its roles in normal cell homeostasis and dysfunction due to aging or disease. Mitochondria degradation is generally thought to occur by autophagy and has therefore been viewed as a cell-autonomous process. In a recent study, we demonstrated that a large fraction of retinal ganglion cell mitochondria undergo lysosomal degradation within the astrocytes of the optic nerve head. It will be important to determine whether other neurons with long axons also use transcellular mitophagy, or transmitophagy, as a primary mitochondrial quality control mechanism either under normal physiological conditions or in disease. The elucidation of the underlying molecular mechanisms is necessary to determine whether defects in transmitophagy are involved in pathogenesis and whether it should become a therapeutic target.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2383-2384
Number of pages2
Issue number12
StatePublished - Dec 1 2014
Externally publishedYes


  • Astrocyte
  • Optic nerve head
  • Retinal ganglion cell

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Molecular Biology
  • Cell Biology


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